Friday, 3 July 2020
Title: Our help comes from God alone
Author: Prathab V
Walking with Jesus daily demands a great deal of faith. Sometimes when we pray and walk in obedience, it is natural to expect great blessings from the Lord. Unfortunately, things don’t always work out as we expect.
Moses did not want to lead the Israelites out of Egypt. But he obeyed and suffered a great deal of hardship. David defeated Goliath, but could not defeat his own carnal desires. David later suffered for his sin. The apostle Peter did not really understand what Jesus was saying. James and John thought that following Jesus can elevate them to sit on the Lord’s left- and right-hand side. The apostle Paul suffered greatly in preaching the gospel to the gentiles. Even the early Christian men, women and children, despite their many pleas and prayers, ended up being torn to pieces by fierce lions in the Roman arena during the time of persecution.
Despite their sufferings, there is reserved for them a crown of glory which no one can take away.
A friend once told me that I should never look down on any Christian who appears to be going through a lot of problems and challenges. “Brother, if you ever see a person going through many pains, trials and tribulations, don’t look down on him (or her). Watch out! God may be making a prophet (or prophetess) out of him or her!”
Indeed, those who follow Christ will be persecuted (2 Tim 3:12). To me, Psalm 25:1-3 describes the Christian’s sojourn here on earth very well. The psalmist declares that God will ultimately never abandon His children. In fact, the psalmist declares that those who trust in God will not be disgraced (v3a). Instead, those who deal treacherously against His children will be put to disgrace (v3b).
God will not owe us anything. Whatever we give up for the sake of Christ, will be returned to us many times over. Note that I am not just talking about material gains, but spiritual gains.
But more than that, our love for the Lord should not be based on what we can gain from God. This is because we already have obtained the best gift of all – eternal life in Christ. God has already given us His best gift. Now, are we willing to give up our comfort, time, pride and even our lives for His sake?
Though equal with God, Jesus did not care for His own needs. “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head,” Jesus said. He was not complaining. Instead, Jesus was pointing out that following Him faithfully requires a heavy price: we need to put God first above our own needs. When we obey, God watches over us and will hear our cries not to fall into disgrace in front of our enemies.
Lord, I cry out to you and ask for mercy. You know me inside out. My sins are not hidden from you. Help me to walk in obedience before You, putting You first in my life. Use me, Lord, as an instrument of Your peace, to bring the gospel to a world seeking hope and relief from pain. In Jesus’ name, I ask. Amen.